Jul 7
Leaving Elephant Biz

USA%20flags%20and%20capitol%20hill.jpg

I have never been good at goodbyes. 

I would like to begin by thanking all my loyal readers and those who have contributed to the discussion on this blog. Politics is as much about the discussion and ideas as it is about getting things done and change. Without people voicing their opinions - and the freedom to voice those opinions - political systems don't work.

Second, I would like to thank Dan Smith and the team at KnowMoreMedia for giving me the opportunity to cover the Republican and Democrat primaries and for giving me a soapbox to voice my opinions.

I will be moving on to pursue other interests and opportunities, but will always be engaged in politics.

I encourage everyone to go out this November and vote straight Republican and to never forget what is at stake in this election. We will be faced with an important choice this November between a charlatan another politician and a good man who tells you what he thinks and has the experience in both foreign and domestic policy that this country desperately needs right now. Go to the polls on November 4th and cast your vote for John McCain.

I'll leave you with a message from Iraq War veterans who know best what is at stake in this election:

 

 
May29
The Great Moral Challenge: Global...

Robert Samuelson has a brilliant piece on RealClearPolitics that looks at one of the most pressing issues of our time: global warming poverty.

Some excerpts:

What's the world's greatest moral challenge, as judged by its capacity to inflict human tragedy? It is not, I think, global warming, whose effects -- if they become as grim as predicted -- will occur over many years and provide societies time to adapt. A plausible case can be made for preventing nuclear proliferation, which threatens untold deaths and a collapse of the world economy. But the most urgent present moral challenge, I submit, is the most obvious: global poverty.

The solution to being poor is getting rich. It's economic growth. We know this. The mystery is why all societies have not adopted the obvious remedies. Just recently, the 21-member Commission on Growth and Development -- including two Nobel-prize winning economists, former prime ministers of South Korea and Peru and a former president of Mexico -- examined the puzzle.

The panel then identified five common elements of success:

-- strong trade and, usually, an eagerness to attract foreign investment;

-- political stability and "capable" governments "committed" to economic growth, though not necessarily democracy (China, South Korea and Indonesia all grew with authoritarian regimes);

-- high rates of saving and investment, usually at least 25 percent of national income;

-- economic stability, keeping government budgets and inflation under control and avoiding a broad collapse in production;

-- a willingness to "let markets allocate resources," meaning that governments didn't try to run industry.

Broad lessons are clear.

One is: Globalization works. Countries don't get rich by staying isolated. Those that embrace trade and foreign investment acquire know-how and technologies, can buy advanced products abroad and are forced to improve their competitiveness. The transmission of new ideas and products is faster than ever. After its invention, the telegram took 90 years to spread to four-fifths of developing countries; for the cell phone, the comparable diffusion was 16 years.

A second is: Outside benevolence can't rescue countries from poverty. There is a role for foreign aid, technical assistance and charity in relieving global poverty. But it is a small role. It can improve health, alleviate suffering from natural disasters or wars and provide some types of skills. But it cannot single-handedly stimulate the policies and habits that foster self-sustaining growth. Japan and China (to cite easy examples) have grown rapidly not because they received foreign aid but because they pursued pro-growth policies and embraced pro-growth values.

The full piece is a recommended read

Unlike global poverty's arch-nemesis global warming; something can actually be done about global poverty. And ultimately, global warming may be the single biggest threat to alleviating global poverty.

save_the_planet.jpgWe are already beginning to see the effects global warming is having on food prices. When it comes to fighting the "global moral hazards," (and I use that term loosely in reference to global warming) the world has a finite amount of resources available. Every dollar and every word wasted on global warming is another instance when global poverty is overlooked.

Additionally, one of the solutions to global warming that the West wants to impose on the developing world is reduction in pollution. This solution completely ignores the billions of tons of greenhouse gases that Western countries poured into the atmosphere during the industrial revolution, and continue to pour into the atmosphere. To deny that same right/privilege to current developing countries is not only absurd, but downright hypocritical. It's no wonder the developing world looks at the developed world with suspicion.

To truly fight global poverty we must first expose the myth of global warming. 

May28
McCain Flexes His Muscle
It's not a big secret that when it comes to foreign policy, John McCain is the most experienced candidate in the race. He has served in the U.S. Senate for two decades and served in the military during the Vietnam War where he was a prisoner of war.
 
As the race heads into the general election, foreign policy (Iraq) will become the central issue and will dwarf domestic issues.
 
Continue Reading
May27
Experience, Experience, Experience
May26
The Morning After

Chuck Todd has a great piece this weekend that lays out what will be happening within the Democratic Party on November 5th:

Whatever the reason, losing is not an option and an Obama loss would bring out the long knives inside the party walls.

A Democratic loss won't be blamed on ideology. Instead, the warring factions will consist of two groups.

First is the old Clinton guard who will argue that the party got too idealistic and didn't go back to its core FDR roots.

In addition, the Clinton guard will argue that Obama alienated too many women as well as Jewish voters and that'll explain why he didn't win Florida and, perhaps, lost Pennsylvania.

However, that won't be the end of the finger-pointing. Obama partisans will whip around and point the finger right back at the Clintons and claim she stayed in the race too long, race-baited and created an environment that was too toxic for an Obama victory.

This bitterness between the Clinton and Obama factions will be very personal and very bitter, opening up the possibility for a third faction to develop, one that will argue that Clinton and Obama were both too divisive to win.

This group could, ironically, be led by folks like Al Gore and John Edwards, two other failed presidential candidates in their own right.

Bottom line on the Democrats: an Obama loss would create a nasty, personal fight inside the party that the media will obsess about because the characters are so television friendly.

Happy Memorial Day!

A memorial day message from John McCain:

 

May23
Fit to Be President

Per the AP

jsmandcm.jpgThree-time melanoma survivor John McCain appears cancer-free, has a strong heart and is in otherwise general good health, according to eight years of medical records.

Mayo internist Dr. John Eckstein, his longtime personal physician, lauded McCain's performance on a heart stress test — sweating it out for 10 minutes when Eckstein routinely sees patients decades younger quit at five or seven minutes.

"I think physiologically he is considerably younger than his chronologic age based on his cardiovascular fitness," Eckstein said in an interview Thursday. "I got a call from the cardiologist who said that he had not seen anyone that age exercise for that long in a long time." 

Early on in the primaries, a number of voters said McCain's age was a problem, but recent surveys suggest it may not be as big an issue. An ABC News-Washington Post poll conducted in April found 70 percent saying McCain's age would not make any difference to their vote. Other recent polls found similar results, with two-thirds or more saying his age doesn't matter.

McCain has shrugged off the issue by highlighting his stamina and strong genes. He has recalled his "rim-to-rim" Grand Canyon hike in 2006; he has campaigned with his energetic mother, age 96.

During his first presidential run, eight years ago, McCain disclosed hundreds of pages of records to reporters as he sought then to counter what aides called a "whisper campaign" questioning his mental fitness. In those records, medical personnel concluded that his years in prison, including solitary confinement, left him with no psychological wounds. Aides said McCain has had no mental evaluations in the past eight years and none was included in the documents. 

 

May22
Romney Forms PAC

Mitt Romney has formed a long term presidential campaign political action committee called Free and Strong America PAC:

romney2.jpgFree and Strong America PAC will support officeholders and candidates who are dedicated to advancing social, fiscal and foreign policies that will strengthen America at this critical time in the nation’s history. The guiding focus will be on the core principles that have built and nurtured America since its founding – uncompromised military strength, a belief in the power of free markets and that a competitive America is one where taxes are low and government is small, an emphasis on strong families and a federalist approach to government that leaves decision-making as close to the people as possible.

It also features some familiar faces:

Headquartered in Boston, Free and Strong America PAC will be led by executive director Peter Flaherty, a former deputy chief of staff to Governor Romney and a deputy campaign manager in the Romney presidential campaign.   

The PAC website features a blog, a list of candidates, and a lengthy bio of Mitt. Oh yeah, and John McCain's name is mentioned a couple times.

May16
New McCain Ad

John McCain is up with a new ad in the battleground state of Iowa:

Hat tip:

 

May15
When Have You Been Proud to Be An American?
Our friends at the Tennessee Republican Party welcomed Michelle Obama to the Volunteer State today with a video that demonstrates how her values differ from the ordinary American's:
Over the course of my life, I have met people who left their home country and found their way to the United States. Some of them left as a result of genocide or war, while others left in search of better opportunity. Many of them had the unforunate experience of living in Europe where they had to deal with racism. Many of them have children, too; some who were born in this country and others who were not, but all of whom have a better chance at life than their parents did.
 
Every time I hear another story of a first generation immigrant, it makes me proud to be an American and makes me thankful that I was born in the greatest country in the world.
 
I encourage my readers to post times when you have been proud to be an American.

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